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Julia in 1984: Character Analysis & Quotes

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  • 0:01 Introducing Julia
  • 0:32 Character Analysis
  • 2:24 Quotes from Julia
  • 3:56 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Douglass Gunselman

Doug is currently a head middle school principal and has taught middle school/high school English/speech/computers. He has a master's degree in Educational Administration.

In this lesson, you'll be looking at the character of Julia from the book 1984. By the end, you should have a better understanding of Julia through a character analysis and meaningful quotes from the story.

Introducing Julia

George Orwell's 1984 is a book about an overbearing government in a fictional super-nation called 'Oceania.' Julia appears in this story as a free-spirited rebel whose relationship and experiences with her lover, Winston, are the backbone of this story.

You've probably seen friends in (or unfortunately you have been in) one of those relationships that seem so perfect yet doomed from the start. Well - and this is a bit of a spoiler - Winston and Julia fit into that category all too well.

Character Analysis

Julia is a twenty-six year old major character in this book. She works in the 'Fiction Department' in Oceania's Ministry of Truth and is the lover to another major character, Winston. Unlike her lover Winston, Julia is practical in her mindset, worried about the here and now as opposed to worrying about her future. She's somewhat rebellious, but in a passive-aggressive sort of way. This rebellion is partly what makes her so compelling to Winston, but also what makes her so dangerous, since their relationship would be illegal due to its representation of free will in Oceania's totalitarian society. It's probably safe to say that Oceania's repressive government is like the worst in-laws you could possibly have.

Julia is seen in the book as someone who enjoys sex. She experiences this with Winston and admits to sleeping with members of the Party, which is Oceania's controlling government. It's been debated as to whether she does this for her own satisfaction or as part of her rebellion, but it's likely to be a bit of both. Over time, what may have started as a physical affair between Winston and Julia develops into love. This love is what ultimately leads to their demise. As mentioned before, in the view of the Party, to fall into love with another person is to put that person above the Party.

With her actions and awareness of their consequences (though maybe not caring all that much), opposing the Party is obviously something on Julia's mind. However, she's not openly rebellious in her normal day-to-day routine. It's interesting to see that, although Winston and Julia are participating in an affair, their views of life and government to some degree are completely opposite. They support the well-known phrase, 'Opposites attract.' For all intents and purposes, they are what seems like a perfect couple.

In order to understand Julia even better, let's take a look at some lines of dialogue that she delivers in the novel.

Quotes of Julia

1.) 'Don't you enjoy being alive? Don't you like feeling: this is me, this is my hand, this is my leg, I'm real, I'm solid, I'm alive! Don't you like this?' (Book II, Chapter III, Pg. 125)

In this line, Julia responds to Winston, who feels as though they are already dead, perhaps mentally.

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